Bryan Paul’s Puzzling NFL Predictions



During the 2012 season, Captain Clarky ran a unique weekly National Football League game predictions column based on facts involving league history, pop culture and other miscellaneous categories without taking into account team statistics, injuries or on-field comparisons between the two teams playing in a game. Chuck Pollock, sports editor of The Olean Times Herald, made picks using traditional prognostication and shared them with me. Each post compared our records.

Using search engines Yahoo and Google, I looked up yearly events and pop culture and historical connections and to look team records. With this information, I created facts for every post, recording statistics in notebooks and linked the previous game to the next game through associations and relationships. I had nine record categories that I assigned to games: head-to-head, conference, division, home or road, games within a state, week of the season, record since an event and record during a period of time.

Each week had a theme.

Week 1-(Sept. 5, 9, 10)-Beginnings/Firsts

Week 2-(Sept. 13, 16, 17)-Leaders  

Week 3-(Sept. 20, 23, 24)-Television

Week 4-(Sept. 27, 30, Oct. 1)-Jim Henson/Muppets

Week 5-(Oct. 4, 7, 8)-Broadcasting

Week 6-(Oct. 11, 14, 15)-College Football

Week 7-(Oct. 18, 21, 22)-Baseball

Week 8-(Oct. 25, 28, 29)-Halloween

Week 9-(Nov. 1, 4, 5)-Politics

Week 10-(Nov. 8, 11, 12)-Britain

Week 11-(Nov. 15, 18, 19)-Basketball

Week 12-(Nov. 22, 25, 26)-Food

Week 13-(Nov. 29, Dec. 2, 3)-Music

Week 14-(Dec. 6, 9, 10)-Disney

Week 15-(Dec. 13, 16, 17)-Movies

Week 16-(Dec. 20, 23, 24)-Christmas

Week 17-(Dec. 30)-Finales/Endings

For playoff games, the posts had four miscellaneous facts to determine predictions. For example, if three facts favored one team, they were the predicted winner. In the event of a 2-2 tie, a fifth “overtime” fact determined the prediction.

Wild Card -Jan. 5, 6

Divisional-Jan. 12, 13

Conference Championships-Jan. 20

The Super Bowl XLVII post consisted of 47 sections with a running count of how many random facts favored the AFC and NFC champion.

Super Bowl XLVII-Feb. 3


Bryan Paul’s season record: 156-109-1

Bryan Paul’s Postseason record: 7-4

Pollock’s season record 178-87-1

Pollock’s Postseason record: 7-4

Head-to-head matchups in postseason: Tied, 1-1

I want to continue Bryan Paul’s Puzzling NFL Predictions posts during the 2013 season and provide a print or media organization with unique content that a variety of readers look forward to reading during the season.

-Bryan Clark





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